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It is Never to Late to Find Recovery: Sober Comedian Bronx Billy O.
Recovery Comedians, Comics Anonymous, Recovery Comedy, Recovery Comic, Clean and Sober Comedy
Bronx Billy O. came to America by boat from County Cork, Ireland, and grew up on the Bronx streets. After Vietnam, Billy was a Teamster, a Pub
and restaurant owner, and before becoming a N.Y.C. firefighter for 23 years, an illegal bookie. He has sailed, dove and traveled the world burdened by his addiction to drugs and alcohol.

After the tragedy of 9/11 and the loss of 343 of his brother firefighters he sobered up and attended the University of Florida. At the age of 62, he earned his journalism degree and began to write.

He has written two highly praised weekly columns, two screenplays and numerous political pieces. He also finished in the finals out of nearly 400 contestants in Arizona’s funniest comic contest two years in a row.Confessions of a Bronx Bookie is his much-anticipated first novel. Every Amazon review has been phenomenal, all five stars. Most see the novel as a movie or series. Unlike many authors who come directly out of college, O’Connor waited to write until after he had something to say. If anyone personifies that life truly begins at 60, it is Billy O’Connor.

Billy's acerbic wit on stage has entertained audiences throughout, California, Florida, New York and Arizona for the past three years. He has shared the stage with such great comedic talents as Todd Berry, Julian McCullough, Jesse Joyce, Lisa Landry and Thai Rivera. As a reformed alcoholic, compulsive gambler and drug addict, his inspirational story reminds all of us that with the proper attitude, life begins at 60.

Recovery Comedy:  What were you like as a kid?

Bronx Billy O:  I grew up on the Bronx streets and loved to play ball and stay the hell out of my house. My old man was an abusive alcoholic, so the streets became my sanctuary. I was a non-entity at home, but like Springsteen sings, "When I'm out on the streets." That's where I felt like I belonged.

Recovery Comedy:  What made you decide to become a stand-up comedian and how long have you been performing?

Bronx Billy O:  I sobered up after 9/11 and enrolled at the University of Florida to earn my journalism degree. While there, I started doing comedy at 58. I knew I had made tons of bad decisions in my life, and bad decisions make good stories. I was right. My book has helped many alcoholic, drug abusers already, and as it exponentially grows, it'll help even more.

Recovery Comedy:  Were you performing stand-up comedy before you got into recovery?

Bronx Billy O:  No. Before recovery, I was a functioning drunk. Sobriety triggered my stand-up and my journalism degree. I know now that I am on the right path. I can help other addicts, and I'm having more fun now, sober, than I ever had in my life. That's something that I would have never dreamed possible.

Recovery Comedy:  Does your comedy have a message and if so what is it?

Bronx Billy O:  Yes, that there is life past addiction, and with the proper help, we can beat our genetic dependence. And that it's never too late. My life really began at 60.

Recovery Comedy:  Who are your comedy idols? Bronx Billy O:  Carlin, Pryor, Dangerfield and at present, Patrice O'Neil and Bill Burr.

Recovery Comedy:  Where does your inspiration for material come from?

Bronx Billy O:  My life experiences and the madness of alcohol and drug addiction spur my humor, but as a writer, thoughts come to me 20 times a day.

Recovery Comedy:  What is your joke writing process?

Bronx Billy O:  I write while in the shower, while jogging, while driving or whenever my subconscious is available. I must tap into that inner resource. I'll write a few words to trigger a memory and then in front of a computer, I will edit and refine. 

Recovery Comedy:  What is your kryptonite?

Bronx Billy O:  Chocolate, sugar and this inescapable weakness to want all people to like me. I'm sure it comes from low self-esteem, but I'm getting better at handling it.

Recovery Comedy:  Is your family supportive of your comedy career?

Bronx Billy O:  I'm a grandpa and divorced, but my grown kids are all supportive. I think they're damn proud of me.

Recovery Comedy:  Is comedy part of your healing process?

Bronx Billy O:  Comedy is definitely cathartic, as is writing. All group recovery programs are based around spreading the cure to help maintain our own. From the stage, and through my writing, I reach so many more people. It's definitely what defines my present life.

Recovery Comedy:  What was your worst experience performing comedy?

Bronx Billy O:  I was at a huge venue with a few scattered patrons in a thin audience. At the time, I was inexperienced and wasn't good at crowd work. It was the longest 45 minutes of my life, polite chuckles at best.

Recovery Comedy:  What was your best experience performing comedy?

Bronx Billy O:  I would say that when I finished as one of the top three comics in Arizona three years in a row. The energy created by 450 people roaring laughter was intoxicating.

Recovery Comedy:  What is your favorite joke?

Bronx Billy O:  I do a joke about waking up after a three-day alcoholic blackout with a prosthetic leg in my bed. That joke just keeps getting longer and better.

Recovery Comedy:  What is your comedy dream?

Bronx Billy O:  I'd just like to supplement my pension, pay a few bills and while doing so, make people laugh. If I can help people along the way, so much the better. I'm a Vietnam Vet and a first responder for the FDNY for 20 years. I like to help people less fortunate than me.

To find out more information about Bronx Billy O. or to book him for your next Recovery Event just click here!

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